The SQL Server is one of the most high-valued, high-risk applications in the Microsoft stack. Here’s why you need to regularly optimise this business-critical application
Software and licensing are likely to be pretty low on your everyday agenda. But would you take more interest if you realised the amount of money you could be saving, as well as how much more you could be getting from your software?
Database management is important, and if you’re managing your data with an SQL Server, then this is one area you need to be optimising.
What is SQL Server?
SQL Server is Microsoft’s relational database management system. Put simply,it is a software application designed to manage multiple databases. It stores and retrieves data as requested by other applications, and alsoprovides a suite of tools that help to build, change, and manage the data.
The data is stored in tables in a similar way to rows and columns in a spreadsheet. The Management System part of SQL Server aims to store the databases which hold this data efficiently, so that the records can be searched or retrieved as quickly as possible.
Why does it need optimising?
SQL Server is a business critical application that can be extremely complex and costly, therefore should be regularly optimised. Based on its business criticality and the ease to which it can be deployed and provisioned, the sprawl of this type of application – high value, high business delivery – can be ubiquitous. Optimising the sprawl is critical to ensuring costs are controlled and data controlled.
Development in licensing models, metrics and terms and conditions has led to huge complexities in how SQL Server is purchased, managed and optimised across its lifecycle. This is further exacerbated with the utilisation of SQL within cloud services.
Businesses need to have an understanding of what is required and how it should be optimally procured. By ensuring proper management of your SQL Server you could benefit from:
- Up to 50% cost savings on SQL licensing, in addition to substantial reductions in operational and hardware spend
- Consolidated databases
- Optimal capacity utilisation, performance and availability throughout the data/SQL Server platform’s lifecycle
How much of your SQL Server is running version 2008 / R2?
Microsoft has announced the mainstream support for 2008 and 2008 R2 will be withdrawn on 9thJuly 2019, meaning that customers will have the following options:
- Extended support, but at 75% of the licence costs versus a traditional 15-25% this would be very costly
- Running these versions in Azure, but the migration of these services may be problematic if not fully assessed for risk
- Upgrade to later versions, although again the assessment on viability and dependencies need to be considered
- Decommission in favour of additional options such as open source (mySQL, MongoDB, MariaDB) albeit some of these offerings don’t align from a use case perspective
By managing your SQL Server you can have a better understanding of current consumption and create a more optimised architecture, resulting in a consolidated and harmonised data platform without compromising performance or availability.
Through a managed service, you can benefit from monitoring, profiling, data management, auditing and alerting functionalities. Your organisation’s data will be optimised and application lifecycle proactively managed.
Kat Cooke is Senior Content Writer at SCC. She was previously Senior Journalist at the Aesthetics journal, and has worked for Sky News, providing live coverage of the last two General Elections and the EU Referendum. Kat has a 2:1 degree in Journalism from City University London.